Girls und Panzer

Japanese noodle lovers go crazy for tank-shaped pork ramen served up at … a convenience store!

There’s so much to love about this surprising ramen dish.

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Girls & Panzer tank vase is appropriately elegant

Some of the gals from Girls und Panzer would tell you that tanks can be pretty cute. And what better way to gussy one up than to use it as a vase? Made using traditional Kasama-yaki pottery techniques, heralding from Kasama, Ibaraki Prefecture, the tank is a reference to a scene with series protagonist Hana Isuzu, who is highly skilled in ikebana, or Japanese flower arrangement.

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Girls und Panzer video game adaptation to be released next year

Girls und Panzer is a popular anime, manga and light novel series following a group of girls who live in an alternate universe where women participate in “the art of battling tanks” and young girls attend schools where they learn to operate WWII-era tanks as a martial art. The series is extremely popular in Japan as well as abroad and will soon be turned into a video game for PS Vita.

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Belarusian video game and Japanese anime with German title brought together by shared love of tanks

As an admittedly old-school gamer, I sometimes have a hard time grasping the appeal of modern video games designed with light users in mind. Lining up sparkly jewels in Bejeweled? Growing tomatoes in Farmville? Where’s the excitement in that?

Likewise, the trends of modern anime can be difficult to understand, with a glut of shows lacking any discernible concept beyond “cute girls hang out together, and occasionally participate in school club activities.”

If you ask me, both of these entertainment fields could do with a lot more stuff blowing up. Thankfully, that’s just what we can expect from the new collaboration between online game World of Tanks and anime franchise Girls und Panzer.

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Japan’s defensive military sees surge of popularity thanks to… anime tanks?

On August 25, the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) will be running its big annual firing practice called the Fuji Sougou Kaiyoku Enshuu. Literally, the name means “Fuji Comprehensive Steam-Powered Exercise,” and it is the country’s largest military test using live ammunition. Anyone who wishes to come and observe the strategic simulation must apply for the opportunity, but after receiving a record number of applicants, it’s estimated that only about five percent of the people who applied will be allowed to enter!

So what caused this explosion of interest in military maneuvers? Many people are crediting the anime Girls und Panzer as one of the main contributors. This lighthearted anime focuses on a group of high school girls studying “the way of the tank” as though it is a traditional martial art. The anime’s popularity has encouraged thousands of civilians to pursue knowledge of Japan’s current military capabilities and to see the tanks in action!

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Fire up your fish roe: the battle tank sushi inspired by an anime series

Ōarai, a town in Ibaraki Prefecture 130 kilometres north-east of Tokyo, was an area hit hard by the devastating Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in 2011. After the tragedy though, the port town received support from around the world, including an unexpected show of encouragement from an anime series set in Ōarai and screened on Japanese TV last year. The intriguing storyline, about a group of local girls who compete in battle tank championships, sent a surge of tourists to the area, with one sushi shop taking out the big guns and offering up a unique, and entirely edible, battle tank creation.

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